5 Must-Read Books For Every Beginner Side Hustler

My background is in biomedical science.

No degree in marketing or sales or business. (I did take one MBA-level class once and trust me, I have not used that knowledge at all.)

I have no business running a blog or freelancing.

And yet I am.

One of the best pieces of advice I have received on this journey is something I first heard John Lee Dumas say : If you eventually want to quit your job and do your own thing, it is better for you to become a “sidepreneur” first and then grow that to the point where jumping off the 9-5 boat will not completely sink you and your family’s life. Once you have grown it to a point where it can safely support your financial obligations, THEN transition into your business full-time.

I know there are gurus out there telling you to simply “jump” but honestly, this advice actually saved my life. If I had “jumped” the way some folks ask you to, it would have been devastating for my family.

If you have no idea what this world of side hustling is, one of the best ways to get into it is to start reading about how others have done it.

The 5 books I have listed below (one of them is still in pre-order mode but EXCELLENT nonetheless) will give you a powerful jump-start into the world of side hustling if you are just starting out.

Note : This post contains affiliate links. I only recommend products I use and/or love.

5 Must-Read Books For Every Beginner Side Hustler

Buy Buttons – Nick Loper

Nick Loper is the host of the Side Hustle Nation podcast (highly recommend) and he published this book late last year.

In it, he outlines 300 different ways you could be making money in your spare time.

Most of those 300 ways are activities that could easily became a major source of income for you if you treat it well.

I am recommending this first because out of the book, you could choose 3-5 side hustles you could start out with today and grow significantly over the next year.

Get Buy Buttons

Barefoot Executive – Carrie Wilkerson

I identify with this book so much now that I am a mother myself. I read it way before I was a mom though.

The Barefoot Executive is one of the first books I read all the way through when I first got into this world. I did not even understand some of the concepts back then because, hello scientist. But the lessons I learned are still with me because of the very personable way the book is written.

If you want something where the jargon is not way over your head and yet gives you a great overview of what working for yourself can look like and what it takes, Barefoot Executive is one to pick up.

Get Barefoot Executive

The $100 Startup – Chris Guillebeau

Contrary to popular belief, you really don’t need a whole lot of money to start a side business.

I started my freelance business as a social media manager for zero dollars. I had invested a lot of time into learning how different social media platforms work but to start the business itself ? I needed no capital.

The $100 Startup is great because it has lots of examples of people starting businesses with less than $100.

Since it is Chris Guillebeau (who has successfully traveled to all the countries in the world), he also promotes the idea of location independence – the ability to work from anywhere in the world – in the book.

Get The $100 Startup

Side Hustle – Chris Guillebeau

I heard Chris tell the story of why he wrote this book at the recently ended Fincon.

It turns out there was a guy who simply jumped and quit his job after reading The $100 Startup without a contigency plan who wrote to Chris telling him he had quit his job after reading the book.

This panicked Chris because he then realized he had not fully communicated how to safely leave leave your job. So he wrote Side Hustle as a follow up to The $100 Startup.

Get Side Hustle

Freelance to Freedom – Vincent Pugliese

I met Vincent Pugliese at Fincon as well and have had a chance to peek at his new book coming out in January Freelance to Freedom.

I chatted with Vincent at Fincon and one of the things he told me that really stuck with me was the fact that he and his wife paid off $140,000 in debt by side hustling to pay that down first while also building up their photography side business.

Once debt was out of the way, the way was cleared for them to fully devote their time to their own time and freed up time for them to spend with their young boys.

I loved that story so much and wanted to include his book here even though as of this writing, the book is only on pre-order.

Pre-order Freelance to Freedom here.

Closing Thoughts

Starting a side business has been enriching to my life on so many levels.

I have learned how to sell, how to nurture an audience, how to write pitches that get accepted, how to handle money properly among other things.

Starting a side business will teach you more than you can bargain for.

But the information on how to get started is plenteous and can be confusing.

The five books I just outlined, will streamline the information for you, show you what is possible and eventually help you earn your first dollar outside of your regular 9 to 5.

Have you read any of these books ? What were your take-aways?

If you have already been side hustling, which books have been helpful to you on your journey ?